Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 11th Dec 2013 13:40 UTC
Windows

The Verge is reporting that Microsoft is considering making Windows RT and Windows Phone free for OEMs, to combat Android.

We understand that any decision to axe the license fees for Windows Phone and Windows RT would be backed by a push for revenue from Microsoft’s apps and services. Microsoft has been experimenting with ads in Windows 8 apps, and any associated revenue from those apps and the company’s built-in Bing search results would help offset the lack of license fees. Microsoft would also push consumers to subscribe to services like SkyDrive, Office, and Skype for additional revenue.

So, let me get this straight. In April this year, a Microsoft-sponsored antitrust complaint about Android had this to say:

Google's predatory distribution of Android at below-cost makes it difficult for other providers of operating systems to recoup investments in competing with Google's dominant mobile platform.

And we have the whole Scroogled campaign (I felt dirty just for visiting that site).

And now they're considering doing the exact same things they claim Google is doing unfairly? Does this company have any internal consistency whatsoever?

Thread beginning with comment 578516
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
Is this a seminal moment?
by Tony Swash on Wed 11th Dec 2013 20:54 UTC
Tony Swash
Member since:
2009-08-22

Microsoft was founded on the principal that making software was the way to make a successful business in the new PC markets. The Microsoft empire was built on an ecosystem where almost all the value flowed into software. Microsoft still makes most of its profits from selling software licenses of one sort or another, even if a lot are labelled as services. if it is true that Microsoft is going to start to offer free OS software then that is surely a true inflection point, the moment when the software giant said there is no future in selling software, or at least there is no big revenue/profit in software licenses anymore.

If they go down this road how long can Office command significant licenses fees?

I wonder what their business model for the future will be?

Reply Score: 5

RE: Is this a seminal moment?
by cdude on Wed 11th Dec 2013 21:50 in reply to "Is this a seminal moment?"
cdude Member since:
2008-09-21


I wonder what their business model for the future will be?


Devices, like Apple, and Services, like Google. Copycat-style. Both failed horrible so far. That's why Ballmer got gone and the replacement needs to do better else bye, bye.

Point is this is the first time that Microsoft needs to adjust. Monopoly gone, business model and strategy needs to change. Many big companys failed on that and became small and only a small amount of companys similar to Microsoft transition successful, ie IBM.

Microsoft is big, bigger and pure Windows-desktop-OS centric. That makes it harder to transition without much lose. Deep cuts ahead.

Edited 2013-12-11 21:58 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Is this a seminal moment?
by Alfman on Wed 11th Dec 2013 23:33 in reply to "RE: Is this a seminal moment?"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

cdude,

"Point is this is the first time that Microsoft needs to adjust. Monopoly gone, business model and strategy needs to change."

I think most of their power came from exploiting their monopoly, they could just control defacto standards by exercising power as a monopoly to neuter the market viability of competitors. That is until antitrust started to be more seriously enforced against microsoft to end their old practices. MS still retains a great deal of power but now that it's a different game they seem to be lacking a competitive strategy in new markets. I think the reason Balmer failed is because he was too used to taking success for granted.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE: Is this a seminal moment?
by allanregistos on Thu 12th Dec 2013 03:40 in reply to "Is this a seminal moment?"
allanregistos Member since:
2011-02-10

Microsoft was founded on the principal that making software was the way to make a successful business in the new PC markets. The Microsoft empire was built on an ecosystem where almost all the value flowed into software. Microsoft still makes most of its profits from selling software licenses of one sort or another, even if a lot are labelled as services. if it is true that Microsoft is going to start to offer free OS software then that is surely a true inflection point, the moment when the software giant said there is no future in selling software, or at least there is no big revenue/profit in software licenses anymore.

If they go down this road how long can Office command significant licenses fees?

I wonder what their business model for the future will be?


As I said all along, (don't know if someone got this idea first), that Microsoft needs to offer their OSes free, no more license restriction, if they want to be still relevant in the near future. Their profit must be for value added services on top of their Windows Operating System(desktop/mobile) and technical support. If they still insist on selling Windows Professional for $159(OEM), and the FPP version which is I think 300% higher than the OEM version, then, to my opinion, their is no future for their OS.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Is this a seminal moment?
by Alfman on Thu 12th Dec 2013 08:32 in reply to "RE: Is this a seminal moment?"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

allanregistos,

"Microsoft needs to offer their OSes free, no more license restriction, if they want to be still relevant in the near future. Their profit must be for value added services on top of their Windows Operating System(desktop/mobile) and technical support."

This is very similar to the linux commercial economic model, is it not? Don't sell the OS, sell the services... To be honest, I don't think there would be enough consumer service & support money to keep a company the size of microsoft afloat. Many consumers today wouldn't ever pay for support and already expect most services to be free, if not from MS then they'll head over to google or facebook or somewhere else to use their free windows OS and free services.


The most obvious alternative is to fund the OS and services through ads. In some parts of the tech world, the transition to ad-supported business models is already happening, but I question whether this is really all that good for consumers.

Technology devices may become as aggregating to use as american TV programming is to watch. Not only is 40% of air time buggered by commercials, but some channels have the audacity to overlay animated ads at the bottom of the screen on top of the show you wanted to watch for several seconds into the show. Many stations are turning the volume up for all the ads and turning it back down for the show, I guess they figured out that people were getting up and doing something else instead of watching the ads. On demand cable TV services specifically block fast forwarding through television commercials. All this on top of the fact that it's not even free since we still pay for both the service and equipment anyways. The future of advertising on computers will get a lot more annoying & frustrating as the ad technology gets shoved more deeply into core technologies like the OS.

Reply Parent Score: 3